Archive for the ‘Marriage’ Category

A Habit of Desperation

It all started when our marriage fell apart. In the midst of disaster, my husband, Brooke, and I fell to our knees and began to pray regularly together in a desperate attempt to put the pieces back together.

Early in our marriage we had periodically tried to pray as a couple but it usually began late at night with one of us longing for the other to initiate it and ended with both of us falling asleep before it was over. However, the crisis that came in years 10-12 of our marriage brought us to a place of willingness to do whatever it took to find healing and restoration, so we began a habit of nearly daily prayer.

This habit born of desperation started as a way for us to reconnect and begin our days on the same page, and it did not disappoint. We threw fancy and formal out the door and instead came to God raw and real. There was no formula or legalism, just earnestness. Some mornings Brooke had to leave for work around 6:00am so he would wake me up at 5:55am. We’d talk to God together for five minutes and then I’d fall back to sleep (or not, but it was worth it.) We brought the Lord our worries and asked Him to work miracles in our lives and marriage. We brought Him our frustrations and confessed even our occasional lack of desire to pray together. We gave Him our children and our future and asked Him to grow His character in all of us. We asked for direction and hope and encouragement and lifted up the needs of our friends and extended family. Where our hearts were shredded God used our consistent prayer time to make them whole and knit our marriage back together again. It was messy, because we are messy—but that is the best way to come to God. When we came without answers and without pride, we found hope.

Read the rest here:  http://www.journeyguy.com/their-story-sarah-beyer/#KmaPwBoOvJScdyJq.99


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Sufficient Grace

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

That is the verse that Brooke started our story with several weeks ago when we shared with our friend Aszia’s college Lifegroup. We were so honored that she would even ask us to come and I wanted to share with you all a few things that Brooke and I are feeling joyful about because of it:

First, we are so weak and He is so big! It was a beautiful, heart-filling privilege to get to share with those college students the dark path that we have walked and the way God has brought us out of it. There is no other reason that we are married today except for God. He is truly the hero of our story—as He should be! There are not many things I have enjoyed more in this life than sitting on that couch next to Brooke, listening to Him talk about the power of God and the necessity of being in right relationship with Him. He was an unlikely ambassador of Christ, but his weakness made God shine the way He deserves to and that is just as it should be. I am so blessed to be God’s daughter and Brooke’s wife.

Second, those college students were awesome. The worship we enjoyed with them really moved us and we were so touched by their compassionate, thoughtful questions and response to what we shared. I should also mention we were surprised, as both Brooke and I expected that question and answer time would be more like, “Um, that was awkward, thanks for sharing, gotta go.” They blew us away.  Their hearts are so turned toward God and eager to follow Him in an authentic way. If any of you in that group are reading this right now, I just want to say thank you for welcoming us and for being so sincere in your response to us. It is our deepest desire that each of you trust God fully sooner than we did and I hope that our story will be encouragement to you about how HUGE He is.

And finally, WOW. Sometimes I am just floored that God loves me. Just wanted to say that. The healing that He has brought in my heart is indescribable and it has made me even more dependent upon Him in a completely surrendered, yet strangely safe way. Why did I resist His leadership for so long?

That’s all for now…peace to you all.

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This is going to sound a little weird, but I’ve noticed that my husband has been getting better and better at loving me. I mean, consistently, over time, he is becoming more unselfish in his love. At the same time that he is becoming more purposeful in sharing his true feelings with me he is also becoming more willing to hear mine. He is quicker to turn toward me than he used to be, he gets angry slowly, and he handles my ever-changing moods with humor and grace. Don’t get me wrong—he’s not perfect.  He still zones out in front of the TV sometimes instead of having meaningful conversation with me and he drinks his weight in Coke daily. But, in the ways that matter, I’ve noticed he is inexplicably getting better and better. I have honored him for it and thanked God for what He’s doing in him, but I have to admit that I haven’t really understood it. I’ve wondered how he was pressing on in love when I act like a big fat baby and how he continues to look after my needs before his own even when he is exhausted.

I’ve wondered…until last Sunday. Last Sunday I heard him say to some friends of ours: “I am motivated to treat my wife with love, not because she deserves it, but because Christ loves ME so much. He’s forgiven me so much, how can I withhold the same from her?”

I’m not even sure Brooke realized he was summarizing scripture when he said that. He was just speaking from his heart. But this is what the bible says:

“We love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4:19)

So it turns out Brooke is loving me well because he has a very well-developed sense of how much God loves him and how unmerited it is. And as he grows in his knowledge of the depth of God’s love for him, God is giving him the ability to love me and all others in his life with the same kind of love.

Suddenly it seems so clear that this is exactly the way it is supposed to work and I gotta tell you—it sure works for a marriage. God’s love through Brooke is breathing life into our relationship  and stirring in my soul a deep desire to live in the same God-loving, self-denying way. I’m a little slow on the uptake, but I’m finding that true love is contagious.

May we all grow so deep in our understanding of God’s love for us that we can pass it on like a contagious disease. Well—you know what I mean.

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